Why is the trial happening?
COVID-19 is a viral infection, and in some people, it damages the lungs causing breathing difficulties. It can also cause tiny blood clots in the lungs which can worsen breathing.
As COVID-19 is a new viral infection, a number of different treatments are being evaluated. Few treatments are known to work in treating COVID-19, and there are some existing treatments that may be effective in treating COVID-19. The ASCOT trial aims to discover which treatments are most effective.
What treatments will be available in the trial?
All patients will receive the best standard of care available at their hospital. In addition, the study is currently trialing the use of two different approaches, called ‘domains’ to see if the treatments are safe and effective. These are:
- Antiviral drugs – to stop the virus from multiplying
- Anticoagulants – blood thinning drugs to reduce the risk of clots
- Low Molecular Weight Heparin
Please see the Interventions page for more detailed information about these treatments.
What will the study involve?
All participants will receive standard supportive therapy chosen by their doctor. This includes close monitoring, and treatments such as inhaled oxygen if needed.
Patients will be randomly allocated by a computer (like drawing straws) to one of the treatment groups, or to receive standard supportive therapy.
The study will collect some information that is recorded as part of normal care – like medical history, temperature and oxygen levels and blood tests.
If participants are discharged from hospital, the study will follow up patients for up to 90 days. They will be contacted at home to see how they are going, or the study will contact their GP.
What are the benefits of taking part?
This research will improve our knowledge of how to treat COVID-19 and may improve the care of patients with COVID-19 across the world.
Participants in the trial may or may not benefit from the treatment they receive in this study.
A benefit of taking part is that participants will receive additional testing and monitoring of their condition, which may on its own contribute to an improved health outcome.
What are the possible risks and disadvantages of taking part?
Medical treatments often cause side effects. Participants may have no side effects, or some side effects that may be mild, moderate or severe. The study doctors will be looking out for side effects.
When will we know the results?
The trial aims to generate results quickly. After the trial begins, results will be continually analysed, so that treatments that don’t work can be stopped and new treatments can be trialed as part of the study.